U.S. to send battalion of tanks to Ukraine ahead of expected Russian offensive

Artillery will be delivered in next few months, White House official says.

Updated: January 25, 2023 - 12:58pm

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The United States will send nearly three dozen heavy tanks to bolster Ukrainian forces ahead of an expected Russian offensive, media reports on Wednesday said. 

The White House had already been anticipated to send the tanks before Wednesday's confirmation. The 31 M1A1 Abrams tanks will equal roughly an entire Ukrainian battalion of vehicles. 

The tank delivery will also be accompanied by multiple M88 recovery vehicles, heavily armored landcraft that can repair and/or rescue other large vehicles in battle situations. 

The White House is also dispatching what is estimated to be around 500 smaller support vehicles to aid in Ukraine's war effort. 

A White House official told CNBC that the Pentagon will oversee "training, maintenance and logistics support for the M1A1 tanks."

Another official told the network that "the training on how to use the tanks, which will take several months, will occur outside of Ukraine."

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